Classical Vocal – Shaunak Abhisheki – Raga – Dhani, Madhu Ranjani



“Ashwini’s name is a well-established name today, in the province of classical music. Her presence at renowned musical conference has become a must now! Both in India and abroad, she commands appreciation by enthusiastic masses and connoisseurs of music. Her singing displays the rare combination of intelligence, aesthetics and sensitivity. A graduate in Microbiology and Doctorate in Biochemistry, she can be certainly proud of her academic excellence. Her Musical career is even more impressive. She began her training in music with Pt. Narayanrao Datar. She received ‘Sangeet Visharad’ degree from Gandharva Mahavidyalaya. Another great influence in her musical grooming was her mother Smt. Manik Bhide, an eminent vocalist herself. Ashwini then pursued her studies under the guidance of Pt. Ratnakar Pai -a veteran singer and knowledgeable Guru with a large repertoire of rare compositions. Ashwini has beautifully blended all these influences to evolve a characteristic style of her own. Seasoned and pliant voice, ease in all the octaves, poise and grace in phrasing, clarity in complex taan patterns, command of rhythm; there are many facets that have endeared her to the masses. She has displayed her creativity in composing new bandishes (compositions) as well. Some of the compositions included in this programme are her own. We are confident, listeners would find them as appealing as the traditional compositions.
Here one of the specialities of this programme is the number of rare compositions presented by Ashwini Bhide – Deshpande. Except the slower composition in Kafi-Kanada, which is a traditional one, every other composition is set to tune by Ashwini herself. For the speedier composition in Kafi-Kanada, and for the Aarabhi Khayal and Tarana, she has written the words as welt. She emerges not only as an accomplished vocalist, but also as a composer with talent and insight.
Raga Kafi-Kanada: This is a rarely heard late night melody. Very broadly, we can say that it is a way to invoke the ‘Kanada’ spirit through the set of notes used for Kafi i.e using a scale with the third and seventh notes (Ga and Ni ) being flattened. However, that’s not so simple. The application of the flattened third note (Komal Ga) is done in two ways. In a Kafi phrase it is used in a swaying fashion (Aandolit). The phrases ‘Ga Ma Re Sa’ and ‘Ni Pa’ herald the kanada feel in it. Besides, maintaing the identity of the Raga from similar Ragas like Bageshri Kanada,Desi,Shahana,etc. is again trying. Ashwini has done this very successfully presenting us with a very chaste ✓ersion of Kafi – Kanada.
Raga Aarabhi : This is a Raga of South Indian Origin. It is derived from the 29th Mela of Raga Shankarabharanam. In its ascent, it uses all the natural notes, omitting the third and the seventh (i.e. Ga and Ni); while the decent uses all the seven notes. This would also be evident from the ‘Sargam’ used in this exposition.All the compositions in this Raga have the dignity and poise of a traditional ‘Bandish’. It is for the first time that original Khayal and Tarana in Arabhi, are being presented in North Indian Music. The ‘Taal’ or the time cycle chosen for the khyal is again a rarity. Matta Taal, a Taal of 9 beats is employed. It has six beats of one-beat value, plus six beats of half-beat value. Both composing and singing of this Raga, reflect Ashwini’s mastery. Bhajans: The concluding devotional pieces bring out the emotive and expressive part of Ashwini’s singing. Special mention must be made of the delightful Harmonium accompaniment by Mrs.Seema Shirodkar and the robust but controlled Tabla by her husband Shri. Vishwanath Shirodkar. The couple has added a lot to the enjoyment of this program

1Kafi KanadaAshwini Bhidde-Deshpande38:17
2AarabhiAshwini Bhidde-Deshpande15:33
3BhajanAshwini Bhidde-Deshpande11:37


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